After the news of Queen Elizabeth’s positive coronavirus test on Sunday, people expressed concern about the health of the extremely popular sovereign, as well as about the future of the monarchy, which has been struggling with scandals major and minor.
Buckingham Palace states that if the queen is ill or abroad and needs to suspend her official duties, two or more counselors can be appointed to her behalf.
These counselors include the sovereign’s spouse — which does not apply to the queen, as her husband, Prince Philip, died last year — and the next four people in the line of succession, who are appointed when they turn 21. The current four counselors include Prince Charles, Prince Andrew and Prince William.
However, royal experts believe that only Prince Charles or Prince William are likely to assume some responsibilities.
After a suit alleging him sexual assault, Prince Andrew was stripped from his public duties and military titles. He has since settled.
Peter Hunt is a formal royal correspondent for BBC wrote on Twitter that the “public won’t stomach Prince Andrew stepping up.”
Prince Harry isn’t in Britain. He has moved his family to California.
Victoria Howard, a royal expert and the founder of the news website The Crown Chronicles, said that Harry “is having his own issue,” with his and his family’s security. “I think he wouldn’t come back,” she said.
This past week, London’s Metropolitan Police announced an investigation into a charity led by Prince Charles. He denied any knowledge of the alleged crime and Ms. Howard said that the investigation would not hinder Prince Charles’ ability to carry out his royal duties unless the police discover any awareness or criminal activity.
After the announcement of the queen’s infection, Buckingham Palace issued a series of reassurances about her health and ability to work. The palace said in a statement that she was experiencing only mild symptoms and was going to “continue light duties.” Shortly after the announcement of the positive test, the palace said that the queen had sent a congratulatory message to the British curling teams, after the women’s team secured a gold medal and the men took silver at the Winter Olympics in Beijing.
Despite the positive signs, the coronavirus virus infection raised new concerns about the queen’s health. She is now 95 and recently celebrated her 70th anniversary of accession to the throne.
She appeared with a cane this past week and joked with visitors about her limited movement.
Robert Jobson is a royal biographer who said he was certain that no replacement would need to be made for the queen since Buckingham Palace stated she had only mild symptoms. If her situation were serious, he said, “they would have just said she had contracted Covid.”
He also said that her age was a source of concern.
“If any 95-year-old, nearly 96, contracts Covid,” Mr. Jobson said, “it’s a cause of some concern.”
Source: NY Times